An Assessment of the Effects of ENSO Events on Fresh Vegetable and Melon Supplies

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  • 1 Department of Agricultural Economics, Kyungpook National University, Korea
  • 2 Department of Agricultural Economics, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-2124
  • 3 Department of Horticultural Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843

The historical effects of El Niño/La Niña events on supplies of selected fresh vegetables and melons (Cucumis melo L.) were evaluated by estimating single-equation supply relationships. Economic variables in the estimated equations were, generally, of the correct sign and significant at usual levels. El Niño events had a negative and statistically significant effect on the Texas muskmelon, Florida fall squash [Praecitrullus fistulosus Stocks) Pang.] and the California fall lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) supply with expected production declines of 15%, 21%, and 5% relative to historical mean production. In contrast, the expected supplies of United States summer onions (Allium cepa L.) and Florida fall and winter tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.) increased about 7%, 10%, and 25% during El Niño events. La Niña events had a negative and significant effect on Texas muskmelon, honeydew, and watermelon, with supplies expected to decline 20%, 29%, and 13% with the occurrence of this event.

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